What do you think of when you imagine the bedroom of a minimalist? Do you suppose it to be stark? blank? white? empty? Well, it is a possibility that those words might apply, but not all minimalists choose to have such “extreme” decor. What a typical minimalistic bedroom should be is simple and streamlined, yet still cozy and comfortable and of course, functional.
Personally, as a mother of several children, white is not really the go-to color scheme of any of our spaces, especially a bedroom. Soft color palettes work better for us and help us feel happy and calm. Plus, having a simple decor with basic patterns give us a little variation, without making our areas feel empty or institutional.
The important thing to me is that the bedroom area is a functional sanctuary. Every item in the room needs to have a purpose, even if that purpose is to make the room feel cohesive and relaxing.
Keeping it simple
Avoid displaying trinkets or filling shelves with clutter. It is too distracting to look around a bedroom and have so many objects within your field of view. In order for a bedroom to feel restful, you need to be very selective of what you keep in this space.
If you want to display something that typifies your personality or complements your decor, that’s fine. The idea, however, is to keep it to a minimum. A piece of complimentary art, a simple plant, a small instrument, a beautiful family portrait, or memento from a trip to a faraway place are all ideas to bring a bit of personalization to your room.
Limit items & furniture pieces
When displaying these simple items, try to keep them coordinated and limit them to groupings of 3. This is pleasing to the eye and helps creates that streamlined look that I mentioned before. Beware of horizontal surfaces in general though, as they tend to fill with clutter and are harder to maintain.
Another part of keeping things simple in your bedroom is to limit your furniture pieces. Here, less is definitely more! Of course, you will want a bed to sleep in, as that is the main point of a “bedroom!” You will probably also want a coordinating dresser to keep your clothing in and perhaps a small nightstand or shelf beside your bed to hold a few basic bedside items. A simple chair might also be handy, without creating too much blockage of your space.
It is not uncommon for minimalist bedrooms to feature mattresses whose height is lower than average. This provides the appearance or illusion of extra space, even though it actually is more “vertical” extra space that you free up when sleeping on a lower mattress. With that said, try scanning your bedroom quickly to see if a lower mattress height indeed makes minimalist sense.
If you need extra storage, you may consider a chest at the foot of the bed, but preferably try to create storage solutions inside of a nearby closet, if possible. Don’t store a hamper in your bedroom, to avoid the mess of dirty laundry. Either move it to your bathroom or even better, get into the habit of taking all your dirty clothes directly to the laundry room.
Keeping it functional
Of course, these two concepts, simplicity and functionality, work hand-in-hand. When deciding what will “make the cut” so to speak, ask yourself…Do I need this? What function does it perform? What purpose does it serve? If you struggle to give yourself a satisfactory answer, then it is probably best to purge that item.
Bedroom is for sleep
If possible, try to keep the focus of your bedroom on helping you get the rest that you need. As your primary space for sleep, this is the function that we are trying to keep in consideration. Sure, an object may be useful for other areas of the house, but do you NEED it in your bedroom? In other words, as an example, don’t bring your office into your bedroom, as that alters the environment and changes how your bedroom is used.
Comfort is key
Do allow yourself a few creature comforts, such a soft rug if you have cold floors or a soft throw blanket to use for a quick nap. If you need a clock to help you keep track of the time, that’s fine, too. A full-length mirror is super handy in a bedroom and doesn’t distract from the atmosphere. A few hooks on the back of your door will help you keep clothes from cluttering the floor. A small white noise machine or a fan is something else that is functional and would be great for a minimalist’s bedroom.
Windows and lighting
Finally, two last functional items that you won’t want to ignore is your window coverings and your lighting. Both of these can directly affect the style and design of your room, as well as determine the amount of light you get. Pick carefully so that they are cohesive to your decor, but also give you maximum control, so that you can have soft light or complete darkness, depending on your needs.
If you share a bedroom space with someone else, it may be tricky to find a happy medium if you are more minimalist than they are. In that case, try to find a balance that works for both of you. You may need to invest in some clever cabinets or storage cubes to help contain their clutter. Try to work together to compromise and create a peaceful atmosphere that allows you both to view the bedroom as the oasis that it should be.
Melanie is mom to five energetic kids, including a sweet little toddler. She enjoys homeschooling her children from a peaceful parenting perspective and traveling with her family whenever she can.